3 Tips To Staying Sober And Improving Recovery In The New Year

The counselors of Common Ground offer advice to those navigating recovery from substance abuse

With a new year upon us, many are left examining their lives – what areas are going well and what areas need improvement. For those struggling with substances, you may have set resolutions before. Whether you’ve recently decided to get help and stop using drugs or alcohol, or if you’ve been in recovery for a while, here are 3 tips our counselors are offering to you as you navigate recovery this year.

1.      Enhance Social Connectedness
Improving your interpersonal life can lead to improved economic, educational, and recreational opportunities. Additionally, it will help you contribute to your community as citizens, parents, employees, and leaders. More than any other tenant, a community of healthy connected people can be a game changer in recovery. Whether it is connectedness to family, a sober friend group, or a formal support network like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), Narcotics Anonymous (NA), persons in recovery stand to benefit from connection with others.

2.      Keep an Open Mind and Set Goals
Being open-minded about the recovery process is vitally important in recovery. Whether you are on probation, attending treatment, or are engaged in another recovery activity, set the goal of keeping an open mind. Consider your counselor, probation officer, therapist, or family as your supports – your team. Though the encouragement they give may be difficult at times, they want you to succeed. Additionally, take the encouragement of others and your internal desire to change and set small, attainable goals to reap small successes along the way.

3.      Take it One Day at a Time
The push and pressure of resolutions can be overwhelming. Don’t let the daunting task of staying sober for an entire year distract you from the day at hand. For the next twenty-four hours, keep your mind on your recovery – on today. Remember what you have learned and what you need to practice. Enhance your social support network, work on your reaction to daily stressors, and practice your daily coping skills. Reduce the stress of tackling the entire year in one day – remember today, and wait for tomorrow to deal with tomorrow.

Stated by Napoleon Hill, “Do not wait; the time will never be 'just right'. Start where you stand, and work with whatever tools you may have at your command, and better tools will be found as you go along.” Keep your recovery first this year and remember all you’ve learned to help you along the way. Remember that recovery is possible – each day in recovery is a day spent on a fulfilling, rewarding journey.

If you or a loved one is in need of supportive recovery services, please contact Common Ground today.